1Mission homes allow people living in extreme poverty to have private and decent shelter that protects against rain, cold and infestations as well as providing security and a defense against crime. These basic results also have long-term impacts; for example, reduced illness and disease as well as hope and dignity. The houses are often made of wood, aluminum or block and are designed to be low-cost and easy to construct. A typical house is 11' x 22' in size, costs around $3,000 USD, and is built in three days by a team of ten to twenty volunteers working alongside the family.
The houses they are building for each other are not handouts though, but rather an opportunity to empower individuals to take charge of their own future. 1Mission respects communities as active participants in their own development rather than passive recipients. This is why each family or individual is required to serve a set amount of community service hours. Hours that allow them to earn their house, creating dignity and ownership.
The work goes beyond the immediate relief to focus on long-term skill development; not just giving them a fish, but teaching them how to fish and equipping them with tools to sustain healthy lives and communities. Over the course of earning their hours, families participate in community development programs. Programs led by volunteers and staff in areas such as education, healthcare, economic & spiritual development, micro-finance, vocational training, legal aid and cultural and recreational education.
These programs are organized around regular Community Meetings, where residents formally discuss community issues through representatives and elected leaders. Through these meetings residents begin to believe in themselves and in the strength of community organization, empowering them to overcome their learned helplessness and participate in formal networks and democratic space.
We concentrate our efforts on long-term, sustainable solutions that last beyond our presence. Communities that are owned by the people, demonstrated through volunteerism, and strengthened through training, education and leadership.
1Mission helps families living in slums develop their own sustainable community with strong social capital bonds between neighbors, and links to external networks. The goal is for residents to unify as a community and work together for the common good, organizing and participating directly, as well as democratically electing representatives to lead the process. The community must determine its own priorities, examine problems, brainstorm solutions and develop concrete goals and methods to achieve them. Once this process is in place, communities can begin to break down their cycles of poverty. Puerto Penasco Rocky Point Mexico.
Filmed and Edited by: Zach Friedbauer.
Shot on Canon 60D with 18-135mm, 10-22mm, 24-105mm, 50mm, and 70-200mm
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